Police try to identify victim of plane crash

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The Independent Online

A light aircraft flying from France crashed in a Hampshire field and burst into flames shortly after noon yesterday, killing the pilot.

The French-built four-seater Wassmer WA40 Super IV had taken off from Perigueux in Dordogne, southern France, earlier in the day but Hampshire police were unaware of its intended destination. Inspector Alan Birtwhistle of Hampshire police said: "There was no contact with any buildings."

A distress call was received by RAF controllers at 12.25pm, moments before the plane disappeared from radar screens. A police air support aircraft was scrambled and located the wreckage at Hare Warren Farm between Whitchurch and Watership Down.

Air accident investigators were examining the wreckage at the scene trying to determine the cause of the crash.

A police spokeswoman said: "We know that as of May 2000 it was Danish registered and we are working to establish whether that is still the case. The identity of the pilot is still not known."

A post-mortem examination will be held today.